Showtime Sports executive Stephen Espinoza took some time to chat with Lance Pugmire about the status of the talks to stage an undisputed welterweight title unification between Errol Spence and Terence Crawford.
There’s been a feeling lately that the fight could be on the verge of collapsing as not much progress has been made of late, but check out why Espinoza is still feeling confident they’ll be able to strike a deal.
Espinoza on the sense that a Spence-Crawford fight might be falling apart during ongoing negotiations
“Look, when you have a negotiation that — I know it hasn’t been public, which I think is a good thing — but it’s still highly scrutinized, and a lot of interest. And I think most negotiations that go on for a while, they have a life span in ups and downs. So I don’t think it’s dead or close to dead. I think there are points where things are moving more quickly, and then points where things are sort of stuck at impasse. And we’re a little bit stuck but I don’t think anyone’s ready to throw in the towel, least of all the two fighters.
“So, yeah, there’s some slow-going, but the discussions are still ongoing, people are still trying to make this work. I think one of the most positive things is that no one’s talking about it publicly. I know that’s bad news for (the media and the public), and I wish I could share more because I know there’s a lot of interest, but at the same time I don’t want to be the guy who blows it up because I say something that irritates one side or the other and they walk away.
“I am still optimistic that it gets done. There’s still a variety of conversations going on, and I still think it’s very, very possible to get that done this year.”
On if he strongly believes Crawford’s next fight will air on Showtime either way
“It’s a good question. I mean, to be completely honest, we haven’t had discussions with him or his team on that. Everything has been focused on Spence vs Crawford and that’s the focus. So, look, we’re gonna continue to try to make that and even if it dies we’re gonna try to revive it — try to revive it again because it’s an important fight and it’s a fight that both fighters want very badly. So I think that’s where my optimism comes from, is the fact that both fighters are 100% convinced that this is the fight that makes sense next.